As this year comes to a close, I am taking some time to reflect on the last 12 months. What I notice is that at this same time last year, I was stressing about the year ahead and wondering what it would have in store for me. This time of year always seems a bit ungrounding – so many changes – and for me, that is scary.
Part of my end of year ritual, and what helps me to feel a little more grounded, involves taking inventory – purging what I no longer need in my life, and determining what I want to acquire. The easy part of this purging is the material goods – going through closets, cabinets, and storage to identify and rid myself of all that I no longer wear, use, or have room for in my life. The difficult aspect of the purge is much more personal. I have to consider what has not served me – taking into account how I have treated myself (critically and harshly judgmental) , how I treated others (detaching and running), and how others have treated me (unable to reciprocate my vulnerability). In some ways, this practice of taking stock strikes fear in my heart because it just illuminates the unknown entity that is the year to come. The practice is also empowering, if I allow it to be. I determine what I want and need to give and receive more of in my life: self-love, forgiveness, community, opportunity, friendship (to name a few).
What has happened over the last couple of weeks, as I have been taking stock and purging, is I have experienced a profound sense of gratitude. Every day I wake up and am able to get on my yoga mat is a good day. Every moment I’m able to enjoy a conversation, cup of tea, a laugh with a new or old friend is a a good moment. 2013 has been one of the best and most difficult years for me. I opened myself up to new experiences and challenges. And just when it seemed as though things were falling apart, I found the strength within to keep going. In 2013 I made some great decisions and some poor ones, but the consequences of each have brought me to this moment. For all of this I am thankful.
I’ve been practicing yoga on the mat for 14 years and yet I feel like my practice, both on and off the mat, is on the verge of blossoming. I’m ready to step into my yoga fully, with my heart and mind open.
So now I’m looking toward 2014 and although I may not feel it, I’m ready and I’m jumping into whatever the future holds – with both feet.